Is Customer Service a Thing of the Past?

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birdog

Lurker
Nov 26, 2019
48
66
Upstate, South Carolina
So I just received a small order from WV Smokeshop with a couple ounces of LL7, some Sutliff Mocha Strips..and a 1 1/2 oz. package of Sir Walter Raleigh Regular...upon opening the pouch of SWR, the vinegar pouch smell was OVERWHELMIMNG!!
and trying to smoke it was pointless...it was sour and acrid, not the light burley taste typical of this blend.

The retailer, said it was because it got warm somewhere in transit, and the excessive heat made this happen.....now the other blends were fine. It came in a small cardboard box....and they WOULD NOT replace it, because it was not their fault.
I pitched it and will never buy from them again.
For the life of me, I cannot fathom being in business and refusing to try to satisfy a customer....the retailer said he didn't care, because he has loyal customers that have bought from him over twenty years.

Terry
 
I don't think just warming the pouch would acerbate a bacterial infection that would cause acetic acid. Unless it took months to get to you, many months. The codger pouches are designed and formulated to set on gas station shelves for years.

That said, I'm not sure this is any fault of the vendor. You could reach out to whomever makes this blend.

I agree, if you don't like how a company responds to you, you shouldn't use them any more. I think that I will order from them just to see for myself. puffy

If we run the B&Ms out of business, when the end comes to being able to receive mail order tobacco finally arrives, if we don't have B&Ms, we won't have pipe tobacco. I think that I will forgo punishing for mild irritants like this.
 
I'm pretty sure that It was a customer that came up with this "the customer is always right" thing. A company that one of my kids worked at had one of these policies, that they would take a return no matter what. It did increase sales, but the amount of returns sent them into bankruptcy and closing within a year.
There is no law that says that anyone has to take a return, unless they are using a third party vendor like eBay, but even then, it's not a law, but an agreement every vendor has to sign onto.

It does suck to get something that is broken or ruined. I do have a hard time understanding what could have gone wrong with the SWR. I have never heard of any tobacco doing that, especially not one that is famous for being jam packed with preservatives like a codger.

However, it is 100% your prerogative to not use them, and it is theirs not to take your return. I both feel for you and your situation, and them as a business. I also don't think that posting this will get you anything more than a vent. And, if you just need to vent, I hope your post helps you with this, sincerely. Who else you gonna vent to?
 

El Capitán

Lifer
Jun 5, 2022
1,177
4,845
34
Newberry, Indiana
I'm pretty sure that It was a customer that came up with this "the customer is always right" thing. A company that one of my kids worked at had one of these policies, that they would take a return no matter what. It did increase sales, but the amount of returns sent them into bankruptcy and closing within a year.
There is no law that says that anyone has to take a return, unless they are using a third party vendor like eBay, but even then, it's not a law, but an agreement every vendor has to sign onto.

It does suck to get something that is broken or ruined. I do have a hard time understanding what could have gone wrong with the SWR. I have never heard of any tobacco doing that, especially not one that is famous for being jam packed with preservatives like a codger.

However, it is 100% your prerogative to not use them, and it is theirs not to take your return. I both feel for you and your situation, and them as a business. I also don't think that posting this will get you anything more than a vent. And, if you just need to vent, I hope your post helps you with this, sincerely. Who else you gonna vent to?
I've worked in retail and customers definitely invented the 'customer is always right' belief. I worked at Office Depot as the manager of the computer repair center. I've had many people bring in computers asking for returns after they damaged the product. I refuse to take in a laptop that has milk and fruity peebles leaking out of it.
 
I've worked in retail and customers definitely invented the 'customer is always right' belief. I worked at Office Depot as the manager of the computer repair center. I've had many people bring in computers asking for returns after they damaged the product. I refuse to take in a laptop that has milk and fruity peebles leaking out of it.
I had a B&M jewelry store for 14 years. I could tell you some stories, ha ha. My favorite was the ring that was run over by a car wheel that was ALL MY FAULT, ha ha.
I don't think this is this guy's situation, but it does explain why a business would be very weary of taking a return.
 

sablebrush52

The Bard Of Barlings
Jun 15, 2013
19,747
45,290
Southern Oregon
jrs457.wixsite.com
Customer care is important, but the "customer is always right" is baloney. The ACE hardware in Ashland is aces with me. That staff is well trained, knowledgeable, courteous, and every last one of them goes beyond to be helpful. They've been great since the first time I walked into the store.
I appreciate that and keep going to them for my hardware needs. I'm also a good repeat customer and don't have unrealistic expectations, such as the store being responsible for something for which they are not responsible, like third parties, the weather, the price of tea in China. It just so happens that this ACE store will protect their customers, in this case me, from the consequences of their carelessness or stupidity, but while it's appreciated, it's not expected.
 

sablebrush52

The Bard Of Barlings
Jun 15, 2013
19,747
45,290
Southern Oregon
jrs457.wixsite.com
I've worked in retail and customers definitely invented the 'customer is always right' belief. I worked at Office Depot as the manager of the computer repair center. I've had many people bring in computers asking for returns after they damaged the product. I refuse to take in a laptop that has milk and fruity peebles leaking out of it.
You fiend!
 

El Capitán

Lifer
Jun 5, 2022
1,177
4,845
34
Newberry, Indiana
I had a B&M jewelry store for 14 years. I could tell you some stories, ha ha. My favorite was the ring that was run over by a car wheel that was ALL MY FAULT, ha ha.
I don't think this is this guy's situation, but it does explain why a business would be very weary of taking a return.
The amount of porn on kids laptops was ridiculous. Some I didn't know existed.
 
H

HRPufnstuf

Guest
I have always felt that that it is important for the customer not to have an attitude of "I'm the customer so I'm right." I have found that with most businesses if you meet them at a reasonable level, they will react the same. Every now and then you find one that won't, and you just move on.
Very well stated, I totally agree. I also agree with just "moving on". A dress-down on the flaws in their service is wasted energy in most cases, it only serves to make one a target for humiliation and bile.
 

birdog

Lurker
Nov 26, 2019
48
66
Upstate, South Carolina
yes, thanks all.
..fact is, I RARELY complain, and don't believe the "customer is always right"....

Just an unfortunate incident, and like the retailer indicated, he doesn't need my business, because he has lots of faithful repeat customers....I also have many other places to buy from...so that's that.
Fact remains, it is a defective product.....manufacturer? Distributor? Post Office? no one really can tell who is really responsible.
Thanks for letting me vent.
 

jaingorenard

Can't Leave
Apr 11, 2022
472
1,771
Norwich, UK
I just bought a pipe from one of our big online sellers in the UK (C-Gars) and it arrived broken. I emailed them, but didn't attach any pictures. They immediately dispatched a replacement, without asking for me to send back the broken one or provide any pictures. I've bought from them over the years, but not that often. I wouldn't exactly describe myself as a loyal customer.

It was only a cheap pipe that I bought as a Christmas present for someone, but regardless of price I thought that was excellent service.
 
They immediately dispatched a replacement, without asking for me to send back the broken one or provide any pictures.
Some places definitely are better than others. See, the funny thing about that is Pipesandcigars have always been top notch CS for me. They've replaced spilled bulk, made sure my wife's flavored cigars are sealed in a bag not to taint my pipe tobaccos, they even called one time before sending an order to see if an aromatic was a mistake, because they knew I didn't like them, etc... and, others come on here like they beat children or something.

C&D is great at replacing moldy tins, but then we get members here that say that they got terrible CS from them over a moldy tin.

It's really hard to tell what is going on, when you only get one side of something.

I feel for you, but I have no knowledge of this company. Whadaya gonna do? At least you can vent.
 

obc83

Starting to Get Obsessed
Sep 4, 2023
244
1,144
I know that taking the historical perspective annoys the hell out of people, but whenever I read something like this, to which I don't fundamentally agree or disagree in spirit, I can't help but think about how recent the birth of true "retail" is. It's a side effect of a new middle class in Victorian Britain... and really/probably a result of the invention of plastic. The point being, customer service isn't something anyone expected until about 200 years ago. Which is interesting, eh?
 
I know that taking the historical perspective annoys the hell out of people, but whenever I read something like this, to which I don't fundamentally agree or disagree in spirit, I can't help but think about how recent the birth of true "retail" is. It's a side effect of a new middle class in Victorian Britain... and really/probably a result of the invention of plastic. The point being, customer service isn't something anyone expected until about 200 years ago. Which is interesting, eh?
200 years ago? Maybe 60 or 70 years ago. There really wasn't much retail in the 18th and 19th century. You wanted fruit, you went to the orchard or the orchardists kid would walk around selling fruit. You wanted a dress you made it. Or paid someone to. Especially in the US, there was very little retail, or "stores". There were some... but, so few that if you didn't like the service at a store... you're fucked, ha ha.
It wasn't really till radio created brands and corporate products, "Martha White Corn Meal in every store... " this was when retail (and competitive retail) took off.
 

brian64

Lifer
Jan 31, 2011
9,629
14,733
It wasn't really till radio created brands and corporate products, "Martha White Corn Meal in every store... " this was when retail (and competitive retail) took off.
It wasn't really till radio Edward Bernays created brands and corporate products, "Martha White Corn Meal in every store... " this was when retail (and competitive retail) took off.

Fixed that for you.
 
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